Complex Aspectual Structure in Hindi/Urdu
This chapter examines two types of complex verbal predication in Hindi/Urdu, and argues that the language internal diagnostics support a constructionalist view of lexical meaning. It first shows empirically that these constructions must be distinguished both from genuine biclausal structures on the one hand, and auxiliary-verb monoclausal structures on the other. It then shows that the semantic contribution and linear order of the components of the complex predicate can be understood under an event structure decomposition, represented syntactically in the ‘first phase’. Specifically, one species of light verb will be argued to be an instantiation of a ν ‘initiational’ head, while another species of light verb instantiates a ‘process’-event head with the main verb providing a ‘result’ predicational head. If the authors' analysis is correct, complex constructions in Hindi/Urdu are a test case that offers striking semantic evidence for an event structure decomposition of the form ‘initiation → < process, result >’, and of its syntactic reality.
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